The day before. Emilyn

Getting There.

So – I enter a liminal space that begins at the airport, when everything I am doing ceases to be and everything I am about to do has not begun. The moment of traveling. The moment of being in between places that is simultaneously a moment of here and now. There is nowhere [...]

Day 1 a diamond in the heart

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Day 1

A diamond in the heart.

Summary: a rich, full and fast day. Kerry introduces her movement language, through class exercises, [...]

Day 2 for Merce

Video clip: day 2 Wang lei & Wang yabin

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Day 2

A day for Merce.

So – [...]

Day 2 studio 703

Studio 703.

Wang mei works at the Academy as a teacher and choreographer. Her background is ballet and Chinese folk dance. She is working with Liu mengchen, Ma linzhi, Chen maoyuan, and Shao junting. These dancers have been working together with Wang mei for a while and the material that they are working on was [...]

Between day 2 & 3

Getting lost at night, walking for hours, trying to find the subway. I come to a square with hundreds of people milling around. No, they are not milling, they are engaged in different physical pursuits. They are dancing. Over here are the roller skaters, wheeling round and round a central point, which consists of a [...]

Day 3 Exhaustion!

day 3 working it out!

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Exhaustion!

Summary. After a very creative and energized day yesterday, everybody is tired — the dancers [...]

Day 3 Strictly floor work

In Wang mei’s studio the dancers are on the floor again, this time lying on their stomachs. I have not yet seen these dancers standing up! Wang mei is also on her stomach with her toes turned under so the balls of her feet are on the floor. She is explaining to the dancers how [...]

Day 4 Endurance

day 4 sun rui

(I am aware that I am not asking questions of the work as I said I would do on day 1. I am not asking questions of relational aesthetics, ecological practice, devising processes, cultural difference, language translation, and choreographic practice. Nor am I asking questions of the dancers’ relationship with Kerry, how knowledge is transferred, the mirror techniques, the affects and attunements of the process. Nor am I making parallels [...]

Day 5 Working the gaps

day 5 wang lei solo

day 5 duets

day 5 Wu Shuai

day 5 wang lei 2

Working the Gaps

Kerry looks like she might be riding a slight panic (with positive energy of course). There are 4 dancers in the space. Wu Weifong is injured and will not be back [...]

Day 6 Pulling together

Video clips:

Day 6 Sun rui day 6 Wang yabin day 6 Wu shuai day 6 zhibou 1

Day 6 Pulling together

Wayne’s blog comment reminds me to write what I respect and learn from Kerry as she works. Her tireless driving energy and rhythmic pace [...]

Day 7 30 minute marathon

sun rui & weifeng day 7

marathon trio: working it out day 7

Kerry has listed the methods she uses when teaching and transferring knowledge of her movement language to students and dancers. This also represents the qualities that are important to her. I attach an image here.

Task (new material):

[...]

Day 7 studio 703 real/empty

wang mei rocking day 7

Wang mei has decided to perform in the work, so now there are 5 performers.

I watch a run of a small section, to music. Dancers are sitting on the floor facing front, swaying slightly, forward and back. I am caught by the concentration, the stillness within the [...]

Day 8 preparing the ending

day 8 beginning

I spent the morning writing up yesterday’s process.

Afternoon

Kerry is talking to the dancers -

— You know the sextet, the lifting phrase altogether? Well good news, it is scrapped.

Kerry sets new line material, as a possible ending and echoing the earlier line material. Three A dancers and three [...]

Day 8 Wang mei

Wang mei rehearsal video

I enter as a discussion is in process about how far to drop their heads as they sit on the floor.

…Time passes, I am watching them all lying on their backs. They are now discussing exactly how Wang mei wants them to initiate arching their necks so that their [...]

Day 9 Qualities

Walking — what happens when dancing stops and walking begins. Can the dancers break out of dance code to walk from A to B, or will the walk become a codified statement? Does walking constitute a gap in the dancing, a pragmatic move from A to B, or is it a full statement. Is a [...]

Day 9 Issues emerging

Issues emerging – welcome discussion and expansion.

The different uses of time and space by the two choreographers. The aesthetics of the different movement languages, classical, fragmented, hybrid, pedestrian. Generic histories of movement languages. Embodying language, outside in and/or inside out. Questions of performing presence — when the dancing stops. Translation and how meaning shifts [...]

Wang Mei interview

Interview with Wang Mei August 7th

Translator: Xu Rui.

Interviewer: Emilyn (transcribed September 2nd)

Xu Rui’s presence as the translator was integral to the interview process. However, I have edited the text to reflect a direct dialogue between Wang Mei and myself.

Emilyn: I am fascinated in your process and I would like to know more about your work. I would like to ask about your concerns in this piece. Perhaps we [...]